Another 54,940 people in Britain have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 3,072,349, according to official figures released Sunday.

Another 563 have died within 28 days of a positive test, bringing the total number of coronavirus-related deaths in Britain to 81,431, the data showed.

The latest figures were revealed one day after Britain surpassed the grim milestones of 3,000,000 cases and 80,000 deaths on Saturday.

Britain’s ambulance service is reportedly facing “unprecedented pressure” as it continues to struggle with the increasing demand due to the new variant of coronavirus, which is said to be up to 70 percent more infectious.

According to Tracy Nicholls, chief executive of College of Paramedics, ambulances are waiting up to nine hours to offload patients at London hospitals.

There was a “hidden risk” as many people in non-life threatening circumstances waiting for up to 10 hours for an ambulance, she told Sky News.

People pose for photos in front of the “London Eye” in London, Britain. Image: Xinhua

To keep up with the demand, the Metropolitan Police announced on Sunday that it will deploy 75 officers to drive ambulances in London.

Earlier on Sunday, British Health Secretary Matt Hancock warned that flexing the lockdown rules “could be fatal”, urging the general public to stay at home amid surging coronavirus infections.

“Every time you try to flex the rules that could be fatal” and staying at home was the “most important thing we can do collectively as a society”, Hancock told the BBC.

England is currently under the third national lockdown since the pandemic began in the country. To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States have been racing against time to develop coronavirus vaccines.

Xinhua | LONDON

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